Fishing: Buffy McAvoy collects sea fishing silver in Weymouth

Buzzing Buffy McAvoy can't wait for next year after being part of the Scotland ladies sea fishing team which collected a silver medals after surging up the leader board on the second day of the Home International at Weymouth.

By Nigel Duncan
Friday, 15th July 2022, 12:47 am
Updated Friday, 15th July 2022, 12:47 am

Edinburgh-based Buffy, who has only been fishing for a year, ended as Scotland's top rod after being second in her zone on day one and winning her zone 24-hours later.

The head of financial operations at Heriot-Watt University, hooked into four fish for 98cm on day one and 11 fish for 255cm on day two and and the 48-year-old, who lost a wrasse of between 40cm and 50cms on day one, which would have been a personal best and would also have won her the zone, said: "I was both nervous and excited going into the event as there was stiff competition, but I am so happy to have won silver."

She added: "I only got into fishing post-lockdown. My boyfriend fishes and I went along and enjoyed it. They I saw a plea for anglers in a local paper and made a call.

Scotland's ladies sea fishing team and officials (l-r) Philip Pape (assistant manager), Gill Coutts, Joanne Barlow, Buffy McAvoy, Karena Duffy, Lesley Maby, Kevin Lewis (team manager). Contributed by Kevin Lewis

"To be here representing Scotland, coming second in my zone and then first and also collecting a silver medal, as well as catching a personal best wrasse on day two of 28cm and being part of an amazing group of girls, is special. I'm over the moon."

She added: "We practiced for two days on an area of Preston Beach designated for the event and we blanked. So did anglers from England, Wales and Ireland so our team manager requested a move up the beach to a reef area. The organisers agreed. That meant we had to change all our rigs overnight. The caravans were like a wee factory, and it worked."

She praised the contribution of manager Kevin Lewis and his assistant Philip Pape who provided coaching and support during the testing event fished in blisteringly hot conditions on the shingle beach.

And Buffy added: "To the Ireland, Wales and England ladies teams, it was amazing fishing with you this week even though we were competitors. The good luck and congratulations you gave us was awesome and I look forward to seeing you all next year."

Buffy McAvoy. Picture contributed by Kevin Lewis

Lewis, the team manager, said this was an amazing result for the new-look, five-strong team which consisted of two experienced anglers and three debutants.

The team won four of the five zones on day two, an achievement complemented by one of the other team managers, and Lewis said: "My assistant, Philip Pape (cor), and I walked the beaches for two days, giving advice, and the ladies listened.

"They were so determined to do well and we are so proud of them and the hard work they have put in plus the determination they have shown throughout. This result augurs well for the future of Scottish ladies sea angling."

Scotland totalled 27 points in the two-day event, seven behind a strong England squad, with 17 points coming on the second day. Third were Wales with 20 and fourth Ireland on 18.

Debutant Joanne Barlow from Brighton, who is captain of Scotland's ladies carp team, and who only took up the sport in the Spring, having to buy all her equipment, also performed well.

Barlow, who suffered sternum injuries in a car crash in Dundee as she was heading home after a training session seven weeks ago, only returned to fishing last week and was second in her zone on day one. She caught six fish on day two but they were under size.

Lewis added: "England were out of reach after day one with 18 points, but our girls stuck with it and smashed it on day two. They were rewarded and Buffy was amazing for someone who has only fished in three competitions before. Overall, this was a team effort. Everybody contributed and the girls are so happy.

"It was even more difficult for them as the reef was was narrow and you had to be so accurate with your casting, you had to hit the spot. The girls managed to adapt and we got a fantastic result."

The other members of the team were Gill Coutts from Largs plus Lesley Maby and Karena Duffy from Cumbria.

A reminder that East Fife host their annual Summer Open on Sunday (July 17) with boundaries from Elie Harbour to St Andrews Harbour with registration from 8am to 9pm at Anstruther Golf Club. Fishing 10.00 to 15.00 and weigh-in from 15.00 t0 16.00. Entry £15 phone Chris on 07872 944807 for details.

Meanwhile, onto fly fishing and evening sessions at Markle near North Berwick have produced with daddies, hoppers and CDC among the most productive patterns.

Floating line with diawl bach on the dropper and dry on the point has been successful particularly in areas of flat calm. Markle is open from 8am to 10pm.

Elsewhere, 30 boats were out on Linlithgow Loch in the past week with 22 fish were kept and 102 returned. Anglers had great results with dry flies, buzzers, cormorants, diawl bachs, and traditional wets. Most fish caught were sub-surface.

Notable catches including Ian Dobbie and his partner who returned nine trout to the loch while Trevor Gibson and his partner returned 19 rainbows.

Tom Lambert, secretary, said: "We continue to stock on a regular basis. Boats are available on most days for a full day or four-hour sessions but to avoid disappointment call 01506 671753 or book online.

It has been busy on both ponds at nearby Bowden Springs with Robert Birrell tempting one of 6lb and Derek Wilson with a best of 5.5lb on the fly pond with Mr Pait netting a 5.5lb brown trout in a bag of four. Buzzer, Ally McCoist and squirmy wormy plus yellow dancer have been effective.

Black Loch near Falkirk report there were 27 boats in the water with 42 fish kept and 49 returned. Favourite patterns were, damsels, yellow owl, sedges, with dry flies doing well until the bright sunshine.

Bill Bryce, manager, said: "We are seeing an increase in bank fishers and pike fishers and would welcome more anglers to come along and enjoy the experience. We now have our own catering set-up providing a full English breakfast."

The fishery is open from 9am to 4.30pm Monday to Sunday. Call on 07527254811 message on Facebook for bookings.

Night fishing has started but you need to book.

There has been some great sport at the Lake of Menteith but only if you were in the right place behind Dog Isle. Two boats scored, one with 12 and other with 33. Top catching boat was Alan Gilbert and Colin MacDonald on CDC and the other top boat fished crunchers in a close by drift.

Now an offer. Fancy fishing for a Scotland Select Team of 16 individuals? The team are travelling to Rutland on July 17 to fish an EFFA Select team and the match is on the Wednesday. Call 01877 385664 for more information. A reminder that the last heat of the Scottish Club Championships is this weekend at the Lake.The final of the Kingdom Fly Fishing Championship is at Ballo (KY6 3HQ) with Eck Moffat from the Lothians one of the 24 finalists and the Edinburgh and Lothians Coarse Angling Club host the eighth round of their Summer League on Saturday, July 16, at Orchill near Auchterarder with around 20 listed.

George Glen won the Sunday Open at Magiscroft with 53lb 3oz with James Woodrow second on 53lb and Barry Lyndsay third on 52lb from an unfancied peg.

Drumtassie bosses have stepped-up their vigilance after anglers were caught killing carp and were barred. They are open from 8am to 7pm Monday to Friday and 8am to 9pm Saturday and Sunday.Chanelle Maver, the manager, said she had recently noted people not handling fish properly and added: "If there is any mishandling you will be put off the pond.

"We have worked very hard so far and do not want to end up with severely damaged./dead fish. Everybody must com to the cabin and there will be a bailiff around the pond. Permits and fishing gear will be checked."